Race report 1 Weather: Sunny, warm, windy Race 1 - 25 laps It was Mercedes all the way in the fifth round of the ITC series with Bernd Schneider leading from start to finish in his AMG Mercedes C-Klasse. His victory took him into the lead...
Race report 1
Weather: Sunny, warm, windy
Race 1 - 25 laps
It was Mercedes all the way in the fifth round of the ITC series with Bernd Schneider leading from start to finish in his AMG Mercedes C-Klasse. His victory took him into the lead of the series. The German's team-mate Dario Franchitti was second, having passed the similar car of Kurt Thiim on lap 14. Jorg van Ommen continued the Mercedes theme in fourth place while Giancarlo Fisichella was the best Alfa Romeo driver in fifth.
Stefano Modena's Alfa Romeo slipped past Klaus Ludwig on lap 18 to finish sixth and, three laps later, Uwe Alzen forced his Mercedes past the Opel to finish seventh. Behind Ludwig Alexander Grau (Mercedes) and Manuel Reuter (Opel) completed the top 10.
There were dramas for both Opel and Alfa Romeo. Yannick Dalmas, who had been holding down 10th place, crashed his Calibra heavily on lap 14. The Frenchman rolled his car at Redgate corner, without injury, but the incident forced the use of the pace car for four laps. Former championship leader Nicola Larini was forced to retire his Alfa Romeo with engine problems. The Italian's car was misfiring on the warm-up lap and, despite a second lap pit stop, the problem persisted. His team changed the engine before the second race, discovered that the electronics were causing the problems and cured them.
Michele Alboreto's Alfa Romeo also required an engine change, Michael Bartels lost two laps with an oil leak onto the rear suspension and Ellen Lohr retired from the race with differential problems.
Bernd Schneider: "I'm pleased that Mercedes has managed to win a race at Donington and delighted that I was the man to do it. We prepared well and simply did our homework better than anybody else."
Dario Franchitti: "I'm happy with the second place but, a few more laps and I think I might have had a chance to challenge Bernd."
Kurt Thiim: "We were not as fast as I hoped. We went too soft with our tyre choice. I'll go for a harder tyre next time."
Yannick Dalmas: "I braked for the corner as usual. The pedal pressure was quite normal but nothing happened, the car didn't slow down. I know that Class One cars have great performance but I also now know that they are very safe."
Jorg van Ommen: "The car was OK but couldn't go at the pace of the others. The pace car period seemed to help Kurt but not me."
Klaus Ludwig: "Uwe Alzen touched me slightly at the hairpin but it wasn't really a problem. Basically I couldn't go as fast as I wanted. I chose the wrong tyres."